There is nothing about the Dividing Hour that will blow you away, so to speak. It lacks Hollywood special effects, Oscar deserving performances and big name stars. So what did I find so appealing about this movie? It is a very solid piece of filmmaking that executed a very interesting storyline to perfection.
Peter, Josh Dean and Zach have just robbed a bank and escaped into the backwoods to make their great getaway. Much like all typecast cops and robbers movies, the four have distinct personalities that begin to clash from the get go. Peter is a brash, non negotiable kinda guy that has to have everything his way. Dean is Peter's pothead lackey that follows him whereever he goes. Josh is the resident heroin addict that masterminded the bank robbery due to his dire need for cash. Zach is the reluctant bank robber who only did the job to look after his trouble prone brother. So off the four speed into the countryside dropping wicked one liners all the way in a sequence that makes the viewer feel drug induced, as we see each character drip from reality to dream and then back again. The whole acid trip ends on a sour note as Josh, the driver, crashes the car in a pond after nodding off from an earlier dose of heroine.
Bear in mind that this low budget affair was all shot in 36 days on poor quality video, offering up the paltry light supplied by mother nature. Some A-listers may see this as a hinderance, but in fact, the lighting and video quality added a feeling of fondness to the quartet throughout the movie. Anyways, the four are walking along the road when an old fucker rolls up on them and offers to give them a ride to the closest place with a telephone, Dawn and Lewis' house. So Al (the guy's name) seems to endlessly travel this back road that the four were stranded on until he comes to the household. He leaves them at the base of the driveway where the outlaws seemingly walk a mile to get to the house.
Once at the house we are introduced to Dawn and Lewis, a farmer's daughter and her deaf and blind father. Dawn is a frail looking sweetheart that everyone immediately gets a rock in their shorts for, while Lewis is this apish mongrel of a man that sits in a chair and stares continually into space. The house is not outfitted with electricity, so again, many of the shots reflect the current lightsource available from the sun or candlelight which add to the aura of mystery. Whilst Peter (under the pseudo-name Greg) is attempting to hook up with Dawn, Josh decides to go back to the road and look for a telephone in town. So Josh hits the ol' country road on foot and walks for quite some time before running into Al again. After dropping a few hilarious one liners on the old man, he agrees to get back in the car and let Al drive him to another phone. Driving in the opposite of direction of the house, the two end up in the same place at which they started, Dawn and Lewis' house. Now the viewer gets the idea that something is peculiar about the surroundings that the boys are in. The house holds a secret which is revealed in the last 20 minutes of the movie, and I guarantee that the plot twist will pique your interest.
The Dividing Hour 10th anniversary disc comes loaded with special features including director and producer commentary tracks, production designs, "making of..." featurettes, a special edition comparison and the oddly entertaining "Interview with the Gimp" (NO, not Stephen Hawking!!!).
As mentioned in the first paragraph, I felt that the execution of the intricate storyline was Dividing Hour's greatest attribute. I have to say that this is a rare occurance where I'm glad that I sheeled out $18 for an indie flick. Albeit, the acting wasn't stellar at times, but the film had a redeeming quality to it and furthermore, it touched on a few subjects that pertain to real life emotional dilemmas. The Dividing Hour successfully created a feeling of uneasiness inside of me, a task now only mastered by movies of asian craft. Not so much that this film was terrifying, but it begins to fill you with self doubt regarding your relationships to others and the sacrifices that you make on a daily basis. It certainly made me bring into question some of the roles the people around me have played, and how my responsibilities as a human being have panned out lately.